MEXICO ART – Art becomes a refuge for Indigenous people in Mexico’s troubled south

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Amid pervasive poverty, communal violence and a tradition of out-migration driven by lack of opportunity, this town in Mexico’s southernmost state is home to a unique space showcasing the art and culture of the Tzotzils, one of the nine distinct Indigenous peoples in Chiapas.

ArTex is the brainchild of San Juan Chamula native Andres Lopez Lopez, known as “Tex,” a 28-year-old painter and musician.

He told Efe here Friday that the idea started germinating when, as a 12-year-old, his mother encouraged him to start taking art classes at the town’s House of Culture.